Cassidy Hutchinson, the former Trump aide turned crucial January 6 witness, says in a new book she was groped by Rudy Giuliani, who was “like a wolf closing in on its prey”, on the day of the attack on the Capitol.
Describing meeting with Giuliani backstage at Donald Trump’s speech near the White House before his supporters marched on Congress in an attempt to overturn the 2020 election, Hutchinson says the former New York mayor turned Trump lawyer put his hand “under my blazer, then my skirt”.
“I feel his frozen fingers trail up my thigh,” she writes. “He tilts his chin up. The whites of his eyes look jaundiced. My eyes dart to [Trump adviser] John Eastman, who flashes a leering grin.
“I fight against the tension in my muscles and recoil from Rudy’s grip … filled with rage, I storm through the tent, on yet another quest for Mark.”
Mark Meadows, Trump’s final chief of staff, was Hutchinson’s White House boss. Hutchinson’s memoir, Enough, describes the now 27-year-old’s journey from Trump supporter to disenchantment, and her role as a key witness for the House January 6 committee. It will be published in the US next Tuesday. The Guardian obtained a copy.
Since Trump left office, Giuliani, 79, has landed in extraordinary legal and financial trouble. Like Trump, Giuliani has pleaded not guilty to 13 criminal racketeering and conspiracy charges in Georgia, over attempted election subversion. Giuliani was also found liable for defamation of two Georgia election workers. The Washington DC Bar Association has recommended he be disbarred.
Struggling to pay his legal expenses, his luxury New York apartment up for sale, and Giuliani also faces a $1.3m lawsuit from his own lawyer, seeking unpaid fees, and a $10m suit from a former personal assistant. In that suit, Giuliani is accused of offences including abuse of power, wage theft, sexual assault and harassment.
A spokesperson for Giuliani did not respond to a Guardian request for comment about Hutchinson’s description of her interaction with the former mayor.
In a statement to reporters after the Guardian story was published, a Giuliani spokesperson and political adviser, Ted Goodman, said: “It’s fair to ask Cassidy Hutchinson why she is just now coming out with these allegations from two and a half years ago, as part of the marketing campaign for her upcoming book release.
“This is a disgusting lie against Mayor Rudy Giuliani – a man whose distinguished career in public service includes taking down the mafia, cleaning up New York City and comforting the nation following September 11.”
Giuliani did make his name as a crusading prosecutor, using racketeering statutes to take on organised crime. After that he was a hardline, law-and-order New York mayor, cracking down on crime in ways that sometimes provoked protest on the political left.
The irony of such a figure now facing criminal charges including racketeering arising from his work for Trump has been widely remarked.
In her book, describing the events of January 6, the deadly culmination of Trump’s attempt to overturn his defeat by Joe Biden, Hutchinson writes that she “experience[d] anger, bewilderment, and a creeping sense of dread that something really horrible [was] going to happen”.
Describing the backstage scene at Trump’s speech, she writes: “I find Rudy in the back of the tent with, among others, John Eastman. The corners of his mouth split into a Cheshire cat smile. Waving a stack of documents, he moves towards me, like a wolf closing in on its prey.
“‘We have the evidence. It’s all here. We’re going to pull this off.’ Rudy wraps one arm around my body, closing the space that was separating us. I feel his stack of documents press into the small of my back. I lower my eyes and watch his free hand reach for the hem of my blazer.
“‘By the way,’ he says, fingering the fabric, ‘I’m loving this leather jacket on you.’ His hand slips under my blazer, then my skirt.”
Information and support for anyone affected by rape or sexual abuse is available from the following organizations. In the US, Rainn offers support on 800-656-4673. In the UK, Rape Crisis offers support on 0808 500 2222. In Australia, support is available at 1800Respect (1800 737 732). Other international helplines can be found at ibiblio.org/rcip/internl.html